Knit Together

Let one who wants to move and convince others, first be convinced and moved themselves. If a person speaks with genuine earnestness the thoughts, the emotion and the actual condition of their own heart, others will listen because we all are knit together.
--Thomas Carlyle

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Someone's Been Up to Mischief

After knitting the sister scarf, I set my size 13 needles on the table and left them for a couple of days. Yesterday I caught Sophie knocking one off to the floor to play with it; when I intervened, I noticed the other one is missing! I've searched all over the living room floor, under furniture and bookcases and pillows, and I can't find it. Where could she have put it? Naughty cat. You can see in her eyes that she's scheming other bad kitty tricks.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Scarf For My Sister

My eldest sister expressed lust for a scarf of her own. We discussed her color preferences; she bought the yarn, but I chose the colorway and type of yarn. I was in the mood to knit last night, so I did almost non-stop. Eight hours later, here it is. It needs to finish drying after the gentle wash I gave it, and then I'll send it to her. She lives in a frigid land, so this will arrive at an opportune time.
brown wool scarf
Combination of Debbie Bliss Cashmarino Aran, 55% merino wool/33% microfibre/12% cashmere, colorway 300008, two 90 meter balls + part of a third for fringe; Crystal Palace Merino Stripes, 85% merino wool/15% polyester, colorway 21, two 115 yard balls, size 13 needles.

The Business of Knitting

If I knitted something with a complicated pattern, where I constantly had to be counting rows and stitches, I often made a mistake the moment my mind began to wander. Sometimes I would rip out rows to correct the problem, sometimes not, but I began to appreciate these mistakes as small lessons in mindfulness or humility and as expressions of the spirit or soul of the knitting, which seemed to exist apart from me, the knitter. My experience of knitting was enriched the more I knew of spiritual matters, and vice versa. And I found that once I could accept my lack of perfection in both areas with humor and grace, the whole business of knitting, as well as of living, became far more pleasurable to me.

--Susan Gordon Lydon, The Knitting Sutra: Craft as a Spiritual Practice

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Silliness

I couldn't resist this happy bunny meme, which I found at Emy's.
Who's Your Happy Bunny?

i know how you feel, i just don't care.
Take this quiz!

Quizilla | Join | Make A Quiz | More Quizzes | Grab Code

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Knit Grafitti

Some people get real creative with their knitting. Check out the article about Knitta.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Clever Dude

My husband has found a way to keep me from invading "his" room, where he spends most of his time with laptop and ginormous t.v. How has he managed this feat? He has warned me that my Christmas presents are unpacked and strewn all over the room, because he intends to wrap gifts tonight. He knows I will do everything I can to avoid jeopardizing a happy surprise.

I'm all alone downstairs, with the lamb stew stewing, and a glass of Shiraz warming my brain. So I guess I'm getting stewed, too.

In two days at this time my brother and sister-in-law will be landing from an Austin flight! Whee!

I still have to clean the house, at least a little. And work on menu-planning. There's time, there's time...
two more felted hotpads
Two more hotpads, felted

Sweet!




You Are Prancer



You are the perfect reindeer, with perfect hooves and perfect flying form.

Why You're Naughty: Because you're Santa's pet, and you won't let anyone show you up.

Why You're Nice: You have the softest fur and the sweetest carrot breath.



[via Shirl, who has a shiny nose]

Redux

Remnants of last week's list plus some new stuff:
  • Deliver paperwork to financial planner
  • Clean house
  • Organize art work space
  • Plan menu ideas for Dec. 22-37
  • Sign and send job offer acceptance letter
  • Send last of holiday cards
  • Return movies
  • Knit third potholder and felt
  • Laundry

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Felt Up

My first felting project.
felted hotpad
Cascade 220, colorways 7827 (yellow) & 8010 (cream), size 15 needles. It took 60 minutes of agitation.

News

The news I was waiting for arrived.

In January I start a new job! I'll work for a non-profit organization as a program assistant. I'm looking forward to it!

Ah, relief. The suspense was killing me. Really. You should see the amount of toffee I've eaten this week.

'Nother Scarf

This one is for me! Mine, all mine! You cannot have it. No!
second orange lacy mohair scarf
Rowan Kidsilk Haze, 70% super kid mohair/30% silk, colorway 596, one-half of a 229yd/210m ball; Rowan Kidsilk Haze, 70% super kid mohair/30% silk, colorway 578, one-half of a 229yd/210m ball; size 35 needles.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Very Specific Instructions

My brother makes a kick-ass stuffing. He and his wife are visiting over the holidays and he will make said stuffing. Today I received the following in an email from him:
Lest I forget, here's what you'll need to have on hand for stuffing:

One bag of herbed stuffing cubes (e.g., Pepperidge Farm) - not cornbread

One roll of sage pork sausage (e.g., Jimmy Dean silver label, which is apparently now gold with a small silver medallion on the front) - brand is not important, but sage is

one small bunch of celery

three or four yellow onions

three or four cans of chicken broth

one stick of butter-esque fatty substance

You must not vary from the path! I will feel the disturbance in the Force if you do.
And that's why it's a kick-ass stuffing; because he'll probably kick mine if I stray from the righteous path. ;)

Waiting

Silence

weighs heavily

on my day.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Get It Together

It is done. All making and procuring of gifts is done. I have gift-wrapped, labeled, packaged, and mailed off gifts for near and far. Decorating is done. Cards are done. Okay, what remains undone is cookie baking, but I'm saving that for when T&L arrive.

However, there is still more. And I'm having a hard time getting focused. So for my benefit, a to-do list:
  • Launder comforter, mattress cover, blanket, and sheets
  • Rip out dead morning glory from the front porch
  • Trim rosemary bush
  • Re-pot spider plant
  • Weed front and back
  • Sweep back patio
  • Rake back yard
  • Fertilize & add soil to lemon tree
  • Start thinking about menu and provisions for guests and holiday
  • Order ham
  • Clean house
  • Organize the desk
  • Finish the mohair cobweb lace scarf I started three weeks ago
  • Get paperwork to financial people
  • Reconcile checkbook
  • Organize art work space
That's plenty. It should probably keep me off the computer for awhile!

Monday, December 12, 2005

This, That, and the Other

It's Monday. I am waiting, hoping to hear good news about a job I want. I'll know sometime this week.

Meanwhile, I continue to play Santa. I dropped off more packages at the post office today. We're all done ordering gifts for Husband's family. I hope his mother's package arrives today so I can wrap and ship it tomorrow.

Wrapping gifts at the volunteer project yesterday was quite a lot of fun. I felt good knowing the community cared enough that residents have some joy at this time of year. Most of the residents are profoundly retarded, but joy doesn't require a high IQ to be appreciated.

On the creative front, not much is happening. I bought a mini-calendar for my purse that had a small mar on the cover. I put a cut-out of paper on the front cover, and it looks dandy. (I've given up on the idea of using my Palm device. I never got into it, and it takes up too much space in my purse.

Other than going to the bank and post office, I'm not doing much. So there's not a great deal of scintillating material for this blog. Ah, well.

Happy countdown to Christmas!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Just More Cookin'

This morning has been a flurry of food creation. I'm on a toffee-making kick since I discovered how. Of course, I'm not making it for me, silly! Husband pleaded with me to make a toffee without the chocolate, but I refused. He pouted. So as a surprise I made him another Meyer lemon buttermilk pie; it's now cooling on the rack.

Very shortly I'll head out to participate in a volunteer event involving gift-wrap and goodies. I'll be wrapping gifts for residents at the Agnews Developmental Center. Following that I plan to call my mom and then make something simple for dinner. (Or maybe I can persuade Husband to fetch some sandwiches.)

I did start another little knit project. I want to see if I can make felted hotpads.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Orange Goodness

Just imagine all the vitamin A packed inside.
butternut squash

Pie Pie Pie Pie Pie...




You Are Mud Pie



You're the perfect combo of flavor and depth

Those who like you give into their impulses

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Scrub a Tub Stall

I'm rather a slacker when it comes to the housecleaning subsection of the domestic arts. And today I decided to remedy that -- at least in part.

We have very hard water, so lots of scaling builds up. Our rental house master shower stall is huge. It's 5 feet long by 3 feet wide and tiled over 6 feet tall. The entire shower, including the floor, is laid with 4 inch by 4 inch beige tile set in dusky pink grout. (This eliminates CLR as a cleaning option for our hard water because it will bleach the color from the grout.) There's a shelf where the shower door panel window meets the tile because of the super-size bathtub that abuts it. It's full of nooks and crannies. This makes cleaning it a royal pain in the ass. It involves being bodily in the shower, and if you need water to rinse you have to leave to get it from the faucet, or get naked and turn on the shower. It's no project to undertake unless you have a lot of time.

Which means that cleaning it happens less frequently than someone like, say, my eldest sister would desire. Husband and I are content to let it be up to a point; we reach that point about the same time. (Have you noticed when you live with someone that it's the person with lower tolerance for grunge who ends up cleaning everything all the time?)

So I tackled the shower today. It's much nicer now, and I feel a tad virtuous. Which means I will reward myself with a mug of coffee and a trip to buy more toffee-making provisions.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Break Your Teeth or Melt in Your Mouth?

I'm trying to make toffee for the first time ever. May I suggest something to you? Never ever use a plastic utensil to stir a pot full of cooking sugar and butter to 300 degrees F.
I decided to follow through just to see that I'd done it, even though I shouldn't eat any. It looks good, and a tiny taste indicates that it tastes good. But it needs more chocolate, covering, I think.

Want the recipe? Click here.

Restless

I'm somewhat agitated. I'm waiting on some news, I don't have enough to do that must be done, and I'm too easily distracted to organize my efforts into something constructive. Arrrgh!

Just thought the world might want to know that.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

More Pie

Pumpkin this time. Here's before:
pumpkin pie before baking
And here it is, fresh out of the oven
pumpkin pie fresh out of the oven
I even have whipped cream! I made it for a dinner party Saturday night. I'll make an apple pie too. Everything is from scratch, including the crust. Yum!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Meyer Lemon Buttermilk Pie Recipe

Meyer Lemon Buttermilk Pie
3 eggs
1.5 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. flour
1 to 1.5 cups buttermilk
2 Tbsp. melted butter
1 tsp. vanilla
5 to 6 Tbsp. lemon juice
Grated rind of two lemons
Sprinkle of cinnamon

Prepare a 9-inch crust; bake 10 minutes at 450 until set. Beat eggs and sugar; stir in flour and beat again. Pour in buttermilk and mix in. Add melted butter, vanilla, juice and rind and mix well. Bake at 375 for 20-30 minutes until just set. Dust with cinnamon.

Meyer lemons have a delicate scent and taste compared to other lemons. Other lemons can be used, in which case you may want to reduce the lemon juice to 3 tablespoons. Depends on how much you like lemon!

She's On My (S)hit List

You know that lovely purple mohair scarf I made only two days ago? Well, look what happened tonight. I'd taken it off just for a moment and somehow it ended up on the floor. By the time I noticed...
It was too late.

And this is the evil miscreant to committed such a dastardly deed. See?! Doesn't she look possessed?
She knows I'm highly annoyed with her. I won't let her near me, and I chase her off when she ambles over as if la-dee-da, nothing's wrong. I mean, I know it wasn't a work of art, but I liked it. It was pretty, just the right length, and I made it. Now it's unmade. I got this yarn in San Francisco, so it's unlikely I'll be getting more soon. *sigh*

I know she's just following her nature. I know the texture is much like a furry mouse and the fibers taste good. But damn. She's a bad, baaaaaad cat.